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    A Beer with the President

    August 3, 2009 by Brandy Vencel

    It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine;
    nor for princes strong drink:

    Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.

    Proverbs 31:4-5

    This is one of those being-with-a-disclaimer posts. First disclaimer: I do not partake of alcohol very often at all; maybe three times per year. The only fermented beverages I drink regularly are kombucha and kefir, neither of which are intoxicating. Second disclaimer: this is not because I am against alcohol. I simply never acquired the taste. Third disclaimer: the Bible never says that strong drink is inherently sinful, only that drunkenness is sinful.

    Now that we have that out of the way…

    As a culture, we no longer vote for men of a certain type of character. Instead we listen to mostly-empty promises {from both sides of the aisle} of what certain men will do in regard to this or that issue. This is a very poor way to select a leader, for many men these days are liars or are otherwise untrustworthy. It is not enough to agree with what a man says, the actions he claims he will take. We must know what sort of man we are electing in the first place.

    Beyond this, Christians seem to have neglected what the Bible says makes a good leader. And so we, too, tend to look at issues first and character last, if we ever get to character at all. But let us think of this in the realm of education. If, through a Christian education, we are aiming to produce a free citizen of the Republic, one who can read, think, write, and speak clearly, one who is truly free in the classical sense, meaning that they are of good character and report, with a sense of both their liberty and their duty, we focus on some things and not others.

    Namely, we do not spend a lot of time focusing on job training. We do not aim to produce workers for the economy. And yet, those of us involved in this endeavor believer firmly that the best men the Republic will see are those given this sort of education. Anyone hiring a “product” of a truly liberal education should be pleased with their hire, regardless of whether or not the child was taught to use Power Point at the age of seven. This is because the child {or rather adult birthed from said child} become the sort of person who is naturally a good employee. Even better, this is the sort of person who runs his own business and works for no one but himself, which was Almanzo Wilder’s father’s definition of a “free man.”

    But I digress.

    Our current President has made the headlines with his beer-drinking. Just like all the feminists used to daydream about bringing about world peace over tea and crumpets, now the media seems to think that the President can solve all the issues under the sun by having a drink together. During the election, Obama made a comment about how Sean Hannity would never have a beer with him. This quickly resulted in some sort of joke about how Hannity was more than willing to have a beer, and why would Obama invite him?

    In the meantime, Obama has had leaders from all over the place over for drinks at the White House.

    In fact the Detroit Free Press is now joking that in the end, all roads lead back to beer.

    _____________________
    **Big Disclaimer: I wrote this back in 2009. I have no idea why it showed up today. I edited a bunch of articles last night, and none of the others popped up, but this one did for some reason. I was editing for formatting and broken links, so I don’t even know if I agree with myself. I’m moving it back to the original date {8/3/09}…and I apologize. We can still talk about it, of course. But I’m embarrassed!**

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    10 Comments

  • Reply Rebekah October 1, 2012 at 2:09 am

    No wonder why I couldn’t find it when I keep on referencing to it lately! I think it was for me in part as I’ve linked to it in political discussions I’ve had with some family and friends on fb. You just said some things so well, “As a culture, we no longer vote for men of a certain type of character. Instead we listen to mostly-empty promises {from both sides of the aisle} of what certain men will do in regard to this or that issue. This is a very poor way to select a leader, for many men these days are liars or are otherwise untrustworthy. It is not enough to agree with what a man says, the actions he claims he will take. We must know what sort of man we are electing in the first place.

    Beyond this, Christians seem to have neglected what the Bible says makes a good leader. And so we, too, tend to look at issues first and character last, if we ever get to character at all. But let us think of this in the realm of education. If, through a Christian education, we are aiming to produce a free citizen of the Republic, one who can read, think, write, and speak clearly, one who is truly free in the classical sense, meaning that they are of good character and report, with a sense of both their liberty and their duty, we focus on some things and not others.”

    • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts October 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm

      I’m sorry I moved it on you, Rebekah! And thank you for your kind words.

      I don’t agree with Mitt Romney on a number of issues, but I think he beats Obama in a *character* competition, hands down.

    • Reply Mystie October 1, 2012 at 3:18 pm

      But only because Obama’s is so bad, not because Romney’s is so good. πŸ˜‰

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts September 27, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Oh my goodness! This is so funny to me…I wonder why this came across your readers? Oh! I just realized that it posted today! Weird!

    I have to tell you something…confession time. I wrote this post back in 20090. I have been updating my formatting for the new blogger language and fixing broken links from years ago, etc. I have *no idea* why this came up today! I don’t even know if I still agree with myself because I didn’t read it thoroughly when I was editing–I was looking at formatting and links. In fact, I’m changing the date back to the original, which was around the time that the article was written.

    How embarrassing.

    But it’s sort of fun to get your impressions…I ended up with something to think about without expecting it at all! πŸ™‚

    Whoops…

    • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts September 27, 2012 at 4:30 pm

      Argh. I mean 2009. Apparently, I cannot type today…and perhaps I couldn’t last night, which might explain the problem…

    • Reply Mystie September 27, 2012 at 8:41 pm

      LOL. That is funny. πŸ™‚

    • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts September 27, 2012 at 9:47 pm

      You can imagine my surprise when I checked my email and there were *comments*!

      I was trying to remember what sparked this post, and I believe at the time, the White House in general was getting a party reputation. Lots of “stars” in and out of the grounds, rumors flying about lots of alcohol, sumptuous feasts, kingly vacations, etc. There was such a luxury about it–as if he were emperor or something. There are far more reason to be concerned about Obama than this one, that is for sure!

      I was thinking today about the warning of Proverbs 23:1-3.

      “When thou sittest to eat with a ruler, consider diligently what is before thee: And put a knife to thy throat, if thou be a man given to appetite. Be not desirous of his dainties: for they are deceitful meat.”

    • Reply Mystie September 27, 2012 at 11:29 pm

      That makes sense; I remember that. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Mystie September 27, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    I don’t disagree with what you have to say here at all, but I thought the article was more an instance of how partisan our politics are and how each side just turns anything into a joke on the other. I mean, *did* they get drunk? The article makes it sound like that was the point, but I’m pretty sure it would have made an even bigger deal out of it if they had. The joke my circles would have made is that he had a “Beer Summit” and then didn’t even drink beer. πŸ™‚ A glass of Bud Light is only enough to give a lightweight a buzz. One of any typical beer will not get anyone even close to drunk.

    I guess I just don’t think that having a discussion over a beer is against the Proverb you cited and not an example of poor character. In my circles, if two guys were going to get together one-on-one to talk something over, it would be over a [good] beer or two if it was over lunch or in the afternoon, or a glass of wine if after dinner. So, I guess that just seems to me like non-news and an excuse for his opponents (and I am one, of course) to make fun.

    That said, there are many more examples that certainly do prove your point, which is a good one. πŸ™‚ God grant us men of character! In politics, none are to be found.

  • Reply ...they call me mommy... September 27, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    Since we are reading Farmer Boy in our Circle Time (which btw, thank you for posting your plans…I’m using a modified version of yours! πŸ™‚ ), the Almanzo Wilder analogy stands out!

    Great post! This makes me take a HARD look at how my BOYS are doing in regards to our Lord’s character…I was recently chatting about how FEW Godly men there really are…including in the Church…it is sobering.

    I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree with you on the point about raising up responsible adults who love the Lord…they then WILL be able to support, carry, lead and GUIDE the next generation…

    I recently was reading in the OT and the Hebrew word for teach stood out to me…the form I was looking at was yarah and it meant “to shoot straight” or “to direct the flow”…I thought that was so interesting in regards to what we are doing as parents… :)I think it ties into what you are saying here…

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